Roland Dürre
Thursday August 1st, 2019

The Teapot and Peace.

The video below was produced by the Schweizer Rundfunk (SRF Kultur). To me, it looks like something you might want to use as curriculum for teaching ethics in Bavarian schools. But I am afraid it will probably not be used. Except maybe if our Prime Minister Markus Söder decrees it in dictatorship manner.

My personal problem is that I actually feel like the protagonist of the video (who is called “Tea-ist”). Except that I do not believe in the teapot with its special orbit around the sun between the Mars and the Earth.

In fact, my belief is far more eccentric and consequently I am even more of an outsider: I believe that we could have PEACE world-wide (in Germany, Europe and globally) and that we could easily do without all the armament industry and its products.

I am well aware of the fact that this is a rather extreme belief and that I am lucky not to be kept between bars for it. But there is hope!

For instance, Elon Musk is said to have sent a Tesla-Cabrio into space and said vehicle has been orbiting there for some time already. To be sure, the disadvantage is that even as a space hiker, you can now be hit by a car.

But it is also possible that Elon will read my article and watch the video. And since he is a good person, he might just feel pity with the protagonist in the video and send a teapot into orbit. If it turns out that the teapot finds it hard to keep course, I am sure he will manage to design a solar-powered engine for the teapot. If anyone can do it, he can!

That would mean that the Tea-ist in the video would suddenly be correct. Perhaps said teapot in space, along with my article and the video, could even advertise a little more PEACE. And then the day will come when my vision will become reality.

Well, to be perfectly honest: I do not really believe it. I think it is more likely that AUDI will send a SUV into space. After all, they now want to teach TESLA about electric automobiles. And an AUDI is really something to be afraid of, isn’t it?

RMD

P.S.
If you use the tag filosix, you will find more extremely demanding and entertaining, and, above all, short videos on philosophical topics.

Roland Dürre
Saturday July 20th, 2019

Musings at Night

 

„Thinking of Europe at night
Gives me such a sleepless fright“

 

Our new logo is at least more attractive than the black-red-gold!?

Here is a small text that might also sound strange and disappointed.
But then, things are as they are, which is why I will try to make my musings at night sound totally joyful.

And I hope that nothing will be served as hot as it is cooked
Before this, I will bow to Heinrich Heine and cite from Wikipedia:


Nachtgedanken is the twenty-fourth and last poem in Heinrich Heine‘s  cycle: Zeitgedichte of 1844. The famous first verse
„Denk ich an Deutschland in der Nacht, / Dann bin ich um den Schlaf gebracht“
has become a winged proverb  (geflügeltes Wort).


A short time ago, I had a stupid idea at night. It was about “getting old”. After all, I am not really very young any more. So I had an idea that made me thoughtful:

My age also has an advantage: the chances that I will have to fight in a war are dwindling all the time.

The idea of having to serve has always been a very uncomfortable one for me. Because this idea makes the option of war a real option. This seemed to be over for us. But is that really true? 
To me, war seems to be the worst of all scenarios. And since now women are also trained as soldiers, I hope that at least the elderly will no longer have to serve in a war. In other words, they will only be part of the collateral damage.

Let us look at the current political situation:

A short time ago, they elected the German Minister of Defense Ursula von der Leyen into the job of EU Commission President. Regardless of the fact that the EU citizens had shortly before voted for totally other candidates. Apparently, those other candidates had not been to the liking of the national European countries.

The new EU Commission President is also said to be the most important lady in Europe and the “Chancellor of Europe”. She outed herself as a “Glowing European”. In my book, she is more a „European Nationalist“. And I certainly do not like nationalists, neither European ones nor those on other continents.

As I see it, “Vive l’Europe!“ is just as bad as “Vive l’Afrique!“ – and I do not at all like inter-continental nationalism like in Europe against Asia or Africa. We need peace and have to save our planet – or else we have to look for other planets together. Mind you, I am rather sceptical about the second option – but given the choice between investing our scarce resources in spacecraft or in wars and armament in order to avoid wars, this is probably the better investment.

Von der Leyen was probably also elected by the European Nationalists. And they are said to be the enemies of Europe. At least that is what they say themselves. Isn’t it strange: you are not supposed to vote Right because they are too nationalist, but you need have no qualms about having them vote for you.

But we do not know. Perhaps the Rightists lie – after all, they are often accused of lying anyway – and they did not vote in favour of von der Leyen. The election was secret. Which is also something I do not understand. As a citizen and a democrat, I would really like to know whom the representative I elected voted for. I would like to see this somewhere in a protected environment. Please make it happen by the next European Elections.

If I were a European Congressman, I would also like to know who gave me his or her vote. Maybe some votes ended up in favour of someone I never wanted?

Secret elections have the disadvantage that they are easier to manipulate than transparent elections. Before the elections, they pointed out massively what damage Europe (the EU) stood to suffer if she is not elected! Isn’t it, then, easy to imagine that an ethically responsible person who weighed all the values against each other sacrificed himself for Europe and switched a few votes for the noble cause. Just as it was when they tried to murder the tyrant on the day the anniversary of which we are again celebrating. It can be seen as an “election modification”, as an act of special civil courage in order to save a continent – I am sure it would count as a heroic deed.

The first thing Frau von der Leyen did was to thank all those who had voted for her. She used the expression “nobody is perfect“ to trivialize the violations of human rights and contractual agreements of the EU members. It is all not so bad. And she also said she wanted to avoid punishment for those who misbehaved, at least as far as the financial sanctions are concerned. It sounded like some general amnesty on the day of inauguration. Doesn’t that sound like a fair amount of self-esteem.

I, too, believe that none of the European countries is perfect. Germany certainly is not. Just look at how we treat EU rules. And how we treat other EU countries. Or, especially painful for me: how we produce arms and distribute them all over the world. Isn’t that also some kind of violation of the laws of humanity.

And the new European Chancellor also understands our strong ally France, which is why she wants to promote the project European Army. I am a little older than Frau von der Leyen and was often in France as a young person in the 1960ies. And I understood how hard it was for the French to accept that they are the losers in colonial politics. This is how I developed some compassion for the ”Grande Nation” that had totally lost its role as former world power.

The new government wants to make France a world power again and delights in nuclear weapons and aircraft carriers. Can’t you understand that? Since it is not possible to do this alone, they are now trying to do it with their ex-arch-enemy Germany as a new ally – and to be on the safe side, they do it under the European Flag.

And neither do you have to take it very seriously that the people in France actually do no longer want to be the Grande Nation. And that the young Germans, too, are fed up with the army, is also of no consequence. A short time ago, I attended an Armed Forces event and heard that, unfortunately, the uniform is not something that is very popular, because the civil society has become “violence averse”. Well, I used to believe it was our shared social goal in this civilization to reduce violence? See the monopoly of the executive power,….

Now you could ask who the new European Army is supposed to fight. I hope it is no longer the Russians. Mind you, Barbara found Siberia quite nice when we travelled through on our train trip to Peking. Allegedly, they also have plenty of mineral resources – and perhaps AM and EM together will manage what Napoleon and Hitler alone could not do.

Perhaps Europe with its new army will also have to defend itself against the sick man on the Bosporus or the evil Islamists with their powerful army? And perhaps they have to protect us against all the future migration from Africa?

After all, you will find it hard to use an army to fight the climate catastrophe or the pollution of our climate through waste and the destruction of this planet. On the contrary: armies will exacerbate and speed these processes.

So what if I now add that, on one of these recent black days, I went to sleep in the evening thinking of nothing bad – and when I woke up in the morning I heard that we now have a new Federal Minister of Defence.

This is my personal Europe Logo. Let us put it on all the tanks and bombers.

It is Frau AKK, who, a few weeks ago, talked about not considering certain things taboo, such as a re-instalment of the only sleeping obligatory army service – perhaps this time as a fair deal for both sexes.

And then I ask my friends to understand why I have such sad moonlight ideas. And why I believe that currently the direction is far from good.

But then I know that everything will in the end turn out differently from what you imagined – and I remain totally relaxed. And I will put up a brave front.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Sunday May 26th, 2019

World-Weariness on a Sunday!

Today, we have European Elections. As I see it, this is a sad day. It is about time to think about how colossally we failed.

KYou played extremely poorly, and yet you won – even in chess, this rarely happens. In reality, it almost never happens.

In our times, we seem to suffer from a collective illness: we are permanently under stress and consequently, we cannot give even those things we consider important the time we would like to give them.

That is why my project PEACE failed and also why I do not really seem to make any headway with my soft and active mobility AKTMOBCMP.

As I perceive it, I and many of my friends are actually better off in this respect than many other people. More often than not, only scheduling problems are in our way. At least, we often manage to actually consciously give the right things priority.

As far as my projects are concerned, I am no longer the force I probably used to be. I call this old-age wisdom.

On May, 31st, I will disappear for more than three weeks because I am travelling to Russia and China. Consequently, you will not read a lot from me in the IF blog in June.

After my return, late in June/early in July, I will try and put a lot of energy into AktMobCmp. I would really like to see more people get enthusiastic about the topic.

On the other hand, I often believe that the project PEACE is probably more important than active mobility in everyday life. Incidentally, the latter is a sub-topic of the former, anyway. After all, soft mobility is also part of PEACE if you think in terms of war on the streets and war against nature. And when no cars are left, then it will be about pacifying those who ride their bikes 🙂 (and then those who walk ).

Apart from this, I am mainly sad about what currently happens in this world. Especially because it is a consequence of how my generation failed. When I was a high-school student more than fifty years ago, we already knew about it. We discussed exactly what we are discussing today and what we see happening today. We knew what the consequence would be. Regardless of several nice approaches, we followed the human virtues (?) “protection of acquired possessions” and “becoming rich without having to work hard” as a matter of course. And this is how we generated the catastrophe we are facing today.
Especially in Germany, we had the chance to create a better world after WW-II. What I mean is the creation of a social construct for a sustainable society without armament and military forces and in shared responsibility for life as such. Based on a reasonable education for all.

We probably had the chance to build a beautiful Europe of regions in courage and joy and thus replace the nations.

We did the opposite. Germany in particular divided Europe and thus destroyed it. Brown coal mining is a good metaphor. The European capitalism – pushed by the Euro – destroyed the country in the same way as the huge caterpillars destroyed the soil.

The internet was our second huge chance. Now we destroy it as well.
Naturally, the responsibility for this downwards spiral was our social and political system and mainly the oligarchy of our bourgeois parties. They will now get what they had coming. But even their downfall is far from guaranteed.

However, the destruction of the world is something we all managed together. Greed brought us here and we followed the liars and hypocrites all too happily.

Perfect manipulation for each and every car: 
Title pages Hobby 1957 – 1965 (the magazine for German young engineers).

Another metaphor for what went completely wrong during the last fifty years is the car. It became a symbol for “movement without effort” and for a totally misinterpreted freedom. For most of us, the car was the golden lamb we danced around.

This is how we implemented a “church of reason” the basic principle of which was consumerism as a religion and growth as its mantra. We replaced old superstition by new superstition. Only the feudalism remains the same. And the destruction of the world is maintained and justified by some kind of feudalism for all.

We now slowly realize that we are paying the price. Some ignore it, others flee into the land of dreams and get over-enthusiastic about #newwork“, #agile and democratic enterprises. Yet, all of us are just standing there as the rabbit before the snake when we see the multi-dimensional destruction of the planet.

The extreme increase in carbon dioxide and the destruction of the climate caused by it destroy everything – which would already be more than enough. We know what should be done, yet we do not do it. We do not have the courage to initiate the “huge transformation”.

But I do not wish to spoil your Sunday with my miserable contemplations. I wish you all that is nice and good and beautiful. Lots of sun, courage and joy! Hope is the last thing that dies.

Thank you for your friendship!

RMD
(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Wednesday January 23rd, 2019

Emphaty, Respect, Appreciation, Fondness, … Love!?

I did it?! The nicest mountain pass I ever rode up.

I read (think and write) a lot about leadership topics. And I think we have come a long way. And I notice something that is a surprise even to me:

It was a fantastically long way we went from fiefdom until we arrived at the current concept of #newwork. We managed this in just a little more than a hundred years. That is exceptional, even if the path was at times a bloody one!

It is a good example for a utopian idea becoming reality.

However, all the things we dream of and we can read in all the great blogs on #newwork are not restricted to leadership. No! They are generally valid as a concept for how we treat other people.

It does not matter if we are talking a relationship, a family or some other kind of social system that unites people for a certain time. It is our life!

What I want to say is that the philosophy on which our life is based should be exactly the same as   what we call leadership philosophy. There is no difference. Both in the family and in the enterprise, I am dealing with people.

So we have now come to the general agreement that the guidelines in life should be empathy, joy, respect, appreciation, fondness, courage, optimism and love. And not chilliness, frustration, arrogance, non-appreciation, hatred, fear, reservations and hatred.

Also, I have come to the conclusion that this philosophy of life and leadership should not be restricted to human interactions. No, we also need to meet social systems with empathy, respect, appreciation – and we need to move therein with courage and love. And it is also true for how we treat our environment and all of nature with all its creatures!

If I want to live sustainable, then I also have to love myself and EVERYTHING else. That means all other people, nature and the entire world.

Otherwise all we have is infatuation. That is also a nice feeling, but it never lasts long.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Saturday December 29th, 2018

This Way or That Way?!

We have the choice. Continue as before or continue to live?

Here is something I found online:

Here is the translation:


Buy-Nothing List

  • Do I really need this?
  • How many of the same product do I have already?
  • How often will I actually use it?
  • How long will it remain in working order?
  • Can I let someone else borrow it?
  • Do I have something similar?
  • Can I live without it?
  • Can I repair it myself?
  • Do I really want it?
  • What will I do with it when I no longer need it?
  • Who gets the money I pay for it?
  • How and where was it made?
  • How long will it make me happy?

There are two opinions:

A)
If this Mem becomes common consent, Germany can close its doors in one week. 
The reason is evidently that our system will no longer work.

B)
If this Mem becomes common consent, your children and their children might at least have a chance to live off what this earth could offer.
? The reasoning is that consumption mania leads us away from ourselves. We are part of nature!

We have the choice!
It does not seem to be an easy choice.
Why?
When, on Silvester night, the rockets will again go up, I will think about it. For the new year.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Monday December 24th, 2018

Merry Christmas (2018)

Most of us know the Christmas Story (Weihnachtsgeschichte) by Charles Dickens.

The story tells us how Christmas cures the old miser Scrooge. What a nice Christmas Spirit! Is there anyone among us who, on listening or experiencing this story, did not have tears in their eyes?

Consequently, I would wish for this Christmas that the miseries of the old “white men and women” may be cured. Whatever their names: Seehofer, Trump,….

This is the spirit in which I wish everybody freedom and wisdom for 2019!

But for tonight I wish us all a Happy Christmas. And on December, 31st, I wish us all a Good Start of the New Year! And always all that is good and well and beautiful.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Thursday May 24th, 2018

Why the DSGVO is moving in the wrong direction.

Roland als Insel-Philosoph mit (sauberer) Wäsche in Sifnos (Kykladen, Griechenland).

A philosophical analysis.

My theory:

We have too much property and too little common land.

We strive too much after ownership and too little after shared social life and survival, experiences, …

Here are a few facts that support my theory:

  • 62 super rich people practically own half the world.
    (62 Superreiche besitzen so viel wie die halbe Welt)
  • Why is it a matter of course that humans (“natural persons”) can acquire (buy) soil and property to their hearts’ content?
  • Why is everyone allowed to own a car that causes considerable damage to the common good? Or a yacht? Why can huge social systems with an economic goal be completely owned by few people or other social systems?

Something is rotten with property. To be sure, I understand to some extent – and even wish for myself – that people, who in our legal system are called “natural persons”, can own property to a reasonable extent.

But why do “legal persons” like capital companies (GmbH, AG, Company Limited … – in French, they are called  “society anonyme“) have the same rights?
If a “natural person” dies, the problem of inheritance is added, which strengthens the polarisation of “poor and rich”.

“Legal Persons” will not die naturally. But they can become bankrupt. And what then? Even with our modern bankruptcy laws, the protection of those who are owed something has priority over saving the enterprise.

In addition, money will usually increase by itself. That makes property more and more powerful and power richer and richer.

Now let us look at the components of ownership.

Initially you own objects. As I see it, that is ok as long as we are not talking objects that should belong to the community and as long as the situation does not do any damage to the common good.

It gets harder when we are talking the ownership of rights. Is it really fair that someone who, with his team and in a fortunate communication system, developed a patent and therefore has a huge income over many decades, can buy any property he feels he wants in Munich City every year? That the authors of bestselling novels or soccer stars will be billionaires after a few years?

To be sure, I understand that the effort of an artist should be suitably paid for. But why is the right to mental property given in the same way to “legal persons” as to “natural persons”? Why does the music of Bob Marley or of the Beatles not belong to all the people of this world, rather than to a few concerns? The same is true for the dramas of Bert Brecht?

And now we also have ownership of data? Isn’t that totally grotesque? As I see it, we do not need data security but the obligation to be transparent! And that we should not try to protect ourselves against institutions that manipulate us. Instead, we should abolish them.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Sunday September 10th, 2017

Another “Coming Out“ – #BTW2017

A cynical party-parody. Unfortunately, I mean it seriously, which makes it a sad thing.

In two weeks, I will again have to vote.

Perhaps 50 years ago.

My civil “super-ego” forces me to go to the elections. After all, I do believe that democracy is doubtless one of the better political systems, even if ours has been seriously perverted and consequently suffered huge damage due to “election marketing”, the dominance of lobbyism when it comes to legislation and government and a party oligarchy.

Besides, the party I vote for will not only get my vote but also one Euro from the state (if certain requirements are met ).

Consequently, I have spent quite some time already in preparation for the next election Sunday. Here is the current state of my personal evaluation. I chose the exclusion principle:

For historical reasons, I cannot vote for the big “people’s parties“ CDU and CSU. They both are responsible for the German re-armament against the expressed wish of the German people. In quite a goal-oriented way, it was prepared by the protagonist Adenauer immediately after WW-II and then realized as soon as possible in a fashion that I would call “criminal”. 
In doing so, they failed to take advantage of a unique historical chance. A chance that perhaps no other country except Germany ever had – which was due to its miserable history in the 20th century. As a consequence of the establishment of the “Bundeswehr”, the GDR followed suit three years later with the creation of the “Volksarmee” – and that was the moment up from which two German states, both heavily armed, confronted each other on either side of a brutal border. 
Without re-armament, the revival of the German weapons industry would not have been possible, either. Another result was forced labour that they called “compulsory military service”. It cost me 18 months of my life. 
Moreover, both “C-parties” have – to this day – seen to it that the political and social characteristics of the FRG are such that it became an opportunistic and egoistic welfare system. Protection of your property has become the highest social value. Even the “C” in the name cannot camouflage that fact. 
Under CDU dominated governments, the state became a marionette of the industry, the destruction of the environment (air, water, soil, nature) was accepted and even promoted (!), as for instance can be seen in the war on the streets. It became the ruling task of the educational system that young people should be turned into consumers and trained to be the labouring masses for the industry. Social solidarity was misinterpreted and freedom was sacrificed. . 
Parties that, to this day, believe that all these measures were good will not get my vote.

Neither can I, these days, vote for the SPD and Green Party, because they not only supported all these things, but also must be made responsible for making foreign German Armed Forces activities possible. At the time, the red-green coalition broke a taboo:
The German Armed Forces were no longer exclusively for defence, but “in order to take world-wide responsibility”. Consequently, that was the time when the FRG started to not only export weapons but also war. 
Unfortunately, if you take a close look at history, the polemic rhyme: “Who was the traitor, social democrats?” is only too true for the SPD. Even my agreeing with the ideal of social democracy cannot make up for this. 
As I see it, the Green Party developed from an idealistic-moralistic party to become an indoctrinated event – besides, I observe that the change from being an opposition to becoming a reigning party took place in an exceptionally foul way: ideals were sacrificed for positions and power.

I do not want to give my vote to the FDP. I am not really familiar with their negative historic achievements because I never took great notice of the party. However, in my perception, the FDP is and always was a party that – with the exception of a few protagonists – always acted rather opportunistic. It also basically always functioned as a party of patronage. And they received even more huge donations from industry than the other aforementioned parties. Besides: if someone demands and propagates FREEDOM yet does not know the meaning of the word, then I do not want to support them.

So what other parties do we have?

Currently, the AfD is rather successful. Well, I need not give reasons in this article why I cannot and will note vote for them. Just like the NPD is out of the question for me. Luckily, it seems like the NPD is no longer relevant. Regardless of the fact that, for reasons I cannot follow, the aforementioned parties constantly seem to try and forbid the NPD, rather than the AfD.

Next, let us take a look at the “Freien Wähler“ and the Freie Bürger Union (FBU). In Wikipedia, several groups of voters  and one small party call themselves “Freie Bürger Union“. They are present in various German cities and constituencies. Bavaria is a regional centre of these groups. And: they consist of bourgeois conservative or rightist-liberally  oriented regional communal politicians, activists and sometimes former representatives of the CDU/CSU who are no longer party members. I cannot give them my vote. 
Among other things, the Freien Wähler want to strengthen municipal self-administration. Their given reason for becoming candidates both on county and state level is that the politics of county and state undermine the independence of the municipalities The party is in favour of separate financial responsibility for the municipalities. On the European level, the party demands that excluding a region must become a set rule in parliament. I cannot vote for them.

So now I need to discuss the “Piraten”. According to Wikipedia, this party considers itself the party of the Information Society and thus as part of the international movement for participation when it comes to the change, they give high priority to “digital revolution” and consequently the information society. I rather like that. In fact, I already voted for the Pirates once in the past. To me, they seemed like a party full of values that, luckily, did not have a programmatic approach. Instead, they basically want to provide their know-how on digitalization, which is a focal point of their agenda. I also knew some members of the Pirate party. They were small entrepreneurs or else freelancers. Some of them were quite nice. 
Then, however, the Pirates thought they had to write a program and thus give up the principle of free actions following the best possible knowledge. In my eyes, this was how they exchanged their agile souls for the hope of success. Ever since then (as a matter of course), their development was in one direction only: down. For me, they were no longer a party I could vote for. What a pity.

Now I already analysed 10 (in words: ten) parties and none of them can get my vote! Am I heading towards abstaining? Will I let my election-Euro go unused? Well, not all is lost, because there are a few parties left.

I find Die Linke in Wikipedia. It says that Die Linke (aka  Linkspartei )  was created through the merging of the SPD splitter WASG and the Linkspartei.PDS. The latter is a result of a re-naming of the SED successor PDS in 2005. This is how Die Linke suffers from a stigma that, to this day, has prevented it from becoming acceptable in society. Allegedly, there are still numerous SED and Stasi people on board, although this seems unlikely to me, if only for demographic reasons. If I were the Wahlomat kind of person, I would probably vote for “Die Linke”, because in their program, I find quite a few things that I absolutely agree with. 
On the other hand, I own a small but industriously earned amount of money – and there is a historic fear in me that the communists might wish to take my millions away from me. As they say: “Only the most stupid calves will vote for their own butchers.“
Apropos calves: there is a Song, but it is directed against the AfD – rather than against Die Linke. However, I do not wish to be a stupid calf.
On the other hand, perhaps I should vote for Die Linke, after all? With modern “democratic honesty”, you should probably vote for the party that you like best. Consequently, I cannot discount the possibility of giving them my vote. Albeit without enthusiasm. But then, enthusiasm left me a long time ago.

But I have not yet reached that stage. I keep looking. Riding my bike to Unterhaching, I see a poster advertising “Die Grauen”. I am thinking of my sparse pension. If I had nothing on top of it, I would be really poorly off. Regardless of the fact that I paid the highest possible pension insurance for decades.
However: Die Grauen have the slogan “For all Generations”. What a disappointment. They are not in favour of us retired people, after all.
However, I find it nice, because I have children and grandchildren. And I want them, too, to be well off. 
According to Wikipedia, “Die Grauen” see themselves in the tradition of the movement Graue Panther that was founded in the 1970ies by Trude Unruh. As opposed to this movement, the party does not see itself as a party for the elderly, but instead has an all-encompassing political approach that they also want to see reflected in the name tag amendment. They formulate their philosophy in the foreword of the party program: “In a global world that moves faster and faster, Die Grauen want to combine the energy of youth with the experience of the elderly and form a society worth living in”. Well, this seems to sound nice. For me, however, it contains too many buzzwords. So I will gladly forget Die Grauen.

I start getting desperate. I found a dozen parties – and only one of them is even remotely an option. But – as they say: never give up. If you fall down, you have to get up again. Clean your mouth and continue.

So I continue. And lo and behold, I see a poster with a very special message:
Don’t be a Horst!

That is something I understand immediately. I definitely would not wish to be one. When he was Minister of Health in Berlin, he committed enough crimes. And now he is king of Bavaria. 
Except: the poster advertises “Die Partei”. According to Wikipedia, DIE PARTEI  is a party for work, for a constitutional state, for animal protection, for elite promotion and for basis-democratic initiatives (Apronym: Die PARTEI). It is a German small party that was founded in 2004 by a few editors of the satire magazine Titanic and distinctly has parody character.“ 
We also read: Die PARTEI meets the legal requirements formulated in the Parteiengesetz. However, some doubt that their program is actually meant seriously. Among other things, they imitate characteristics and electoral campaign methods used by other parties and occasionally some of the members are seen on other party’s events.

Well, basically I am the type of reader who reads POSTILLON, but you must never be too one-sided. “Die Partei“ is also called the satire party. When I hear satire, I think cabaret. And immediately, I think of people like Bruno Jonas, Claus Wagner, Dieter Hildebrandt, Gerhard Polt, Jörg Hube, Josef Hader, Georg Schramm, Maximilian „Max“ Uthoff, Sigi Zimmerschied, Urban Priol (Pelzig) and Werner Schneyder. Not to forget the much-loved Hanns Dieter Hüsch. These are all people I saw many times and some of them I was personally acquainted with. They all absolutely impressed me with their sensitivity, their sharp intellect and their precise logics. I admire how they were able to retain their sense of humour in the face of everything. These are people I managed to have honest discussions with quite quickly.

Most of the cabaret people I saw on TV or when I went to their shows made a huge impression on me. Maybe it makes sense, after all, to actually vote for a “satire party”. Especially if such a party offers itself to frustrated non-voters who need to be persuaded to vote at all? 
Unfortunately, this party, too, has a shadow looming over it. A short time ago, I followed a constructive facebook discussion about whether or not anybody can call himself responsible if he votes for a satire party in times like ours, where the social spiral rapidly points downwards and huge problems loom over the horizon. Because times are basically the exact opposite of hilarious. 
As I see it, this is a serious argument. But then, maybe we should solve the problems with serious humour? So now I found another party besides Die Linke that might qualify as a recipient of my cross and one Euro.

However, I want more. This is not the way to get on. So now I use another concept of thought and ask myself what was the last relevant social change in Bavaria I considered progress and which party initiated it.

The answer is easy – it was Non-Smokers’ Protection. In Bavaria, it has now even been enforced on the Octoberfest, which is something that seemed to be unthinkable for a long time. Consequently, this year, I can really look forward to the Octoberfest that takes place at the same time as the elections. I will spend the evening of election day with friends drinking in a smoke-free environment. In Bavaria, the protection of non-smokers was initiated after a plebiscite “Non-Smokers’s Protection” on July, 4th,2010 after a successful  petition for a referendum  “For true non-smokers’ protection!“. The petition had aimed at changing the Bavarian Health Protection Law (Gesundheitsschutzgesetz, GSG). As a consequence, they eventually installed a ban on smoking  in all pubs without exception. The C party had been against it on the grounds that, allegedly, the entire Bavarian restaurant sector would be ruined. The initiative had come from Sebastian Frankenberger and the ÖDP.
Well, my discussion of parties had actually not yet mentioned the ÖDP. Incidentally, their program is a fairly good match to my ideas. However, I sometimes fear that there might be a lot of protestant frugality and catholic saintliness in this party. However, as long as the goals are the right ones and I am not forced to become a catholic…

So now I found three parties that might actually be worthy of my vote: Die Linke, the Partei and the ÖDP. During the next few weeks, I will gather some more information and think about it – and then I will decide. After all, I know full well that decisions are always made under uncertainty.

And now, for the time being, there is an end to me “outings”.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

P.S.
Today, when I rode my bike home, I saw a DKP poster at the Ottobrunn S-Bahn station. It said: “More Income, Less Armament”. Well, that sounds reasonable and rational. But can anybody vote for DKP? Somehow or other, that would be strange.

Roland Dürre
Wednesday August 23rd, 2017

Why We Need Christophine! (II)

Why We Need Christophine! (I)

That is what I wrote on July, 12th. It was a few days after I, at the age of 67, was permitted to once again attend primary school. At Christophine. And it makes me very happy how much encouragement I received after having published my article.

This is how I make the experience that my criticism about how children world-wide are “educated” and “instructed” more than a loner’s issue. Because if we talk school, we mostly mean that a young person is “trained” or “formatted” – and the appreciation of the child is totally neglected.

How you can treat children with respect and give them space to learn and experience life under their own control and highly motivated is exactly what I was allowed to see on June, 23rd in Marbach on the river Neckar. Here is my report:

On this Friday, I was part of the class for half a day. Being a nervous new student, I was, naturally, very early. And I enjoyed how the boys and girls arrived one after the other. All of them were in a good mood and joyful – apparently they were quite happy to go to school.

As soon as the class was complete, they all sang a song together. The song was a welcome in many languages – so we shared looking forward to the day.

After the song, the first round of this Friday morning went to the children. They told the class about an experience that had been important to them. One of the children moderated the round – each day, this task is assigned to a different child.
A self-made cardboard box was handed from narrator to narrator – it had a green circle on one side and a red circle on the opposite side. As long as a child spoke, the listeners were shown the red side (Please do not talk, listen to me!).

As soon as the narrator was finished and questions were allowed, the box was turned around and everybody saw the green side (Now your questions and comments are welcome!).

It was great to see how nice and short both the narratives and the questions and answers were. How the children paid attention while listening and letting everybody say all they wanted to say. I had to think of all the brutal chaos I so often experienced during many discussions with grown-ups (meetings with very important persons) …

The second round was about planning the work ahead. The children decided what they wanted to do during the rest of the morning. I was quite surprised to see the high degree of motivation shown by the children and how realistic they were about evaluating their own competence, which is what they then based their activities on.

At the Christophine, nobody is forced to sit down. That is why all the children wear very soft-soled shoes, because they do not want to disturb others when they work. Because that is an important right. You can also demand it (Please do not disturb me while I am working!). You can work in groups or individually, depending on what makes sense to you. And if the weather is fine, you can also work outdoors.

It stroke me that, at the Christophine, there is an order that serves everybody. It is not seen as a constraint.

Instead, it is seen as something that allows a successful social setting. Nor is it self-serving. Instead, it creates a workspace that allows a reasonable treatment both for yourself and together with others.

The language at this school is full of mutual respect – and I would call it “altero-centric”. The children listen, let others finish and relate to what the other child wants. This is very rare among adults. Consequently, I saw a surprising degree of true and violence-free communication at this school. I saw how people relate to each other as I do not often see it with grown-ups.

Naturally, there was also a conflict situation. However, this situation was not waltzed over by teachers, nor was anybody punished. The quarrelling parties (one was a boy, the other a girl) were advised to deal with the conflict situation in a reasonable way. And when it became difficult, the two young people were invited to retreat and solve their problem in private. And when, later on, they went to the village fountain and both put their hands under water, the conflict was over.

And whenever the grown-up world came to mind, I had tears in my eyes. Yes, Rupert Lay was quite right when he said that children are wise creatures. And that we, the parents and teachers, sacrifice their wisdom on the altar of education.

And I also believe that we have actually made progress, for instance through the Montessori School ( Montessori Schule) concept. But that is not enough for me. What we need is many free and self-organized schools with a modern concept. Without indoctrination and central rules.

Now I enjoy the Greek sun. And I wonder what I can do for Christophine.

In my current life phase, I try to find my own peace and multiply my love. Because this is the basis of everything else. I spend a lot of time helping mentees (while they study and when they start their professional careers) and young entrepreneurs (with their start-ups). This is because I want them to become more successful and happier in their lives.

I support young mothers on their way back into work by helping them to write “alternative cv-s” (telling them to describe what they can and wish to do, instead of what they did in the past).

With friends of mine, I founded barcamps and PM Camps and similar events in order to make the concepts of “new ideas” and “breaking patterns” more popular. All the time, I am busy building networks for people in general in order to make them stronger and greater together. And I try to live a mobility that makes sense and I express my desire for peace.

And some of it actually seems to work out quite well. That is something that really makes me a little happier.

But would it not be better to invest my time and strength by helping the very small and weak people? Our children and grandchildren. As I see it, they are worse off each year, because they are robbed of their freedom and indoctrinated more and more due to so-called practical constraints. Just because you want them to become nice citizens and
consumers.

Basically, our society wants the very best, but then they could not do a worse job if they tried. Unfortunately, our children are the best example for this. Consequently, should it not be my main goal to do something for our children? To make them feel big, instead of small? And to give them a chance towards getting the best start for a successful life as free and autonomous persons?

Well, those are the typical ideas you get during a wonderful time-out.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

P.S.
The “Marbacher Pädagogik“ by Lorenz Obleser is something I consider a match for the modern concept we need. In my article “Christophine III”, I will try to formulate something with him and other protagonists of Christophine in the IF blog.

Roland Dürre
Thursday July 20th, 2017

A Day With Love …

Exactly one month ago, I turned 67. Few people brought me a present, because my friends accept that I already have all I need. And that I do not care for useless gimmicks . I appreciate that this is how my friends treat me.
Luckily, once in a while, there is a person who makes an exception to this rule.
🙂 I am grateful for these exceptions, too. Paul, for instance, gave me the book:

A Day With Love by Moshen Charifi

It was a good thing to get this book because I often have the impression that I was born into this world equipped with many eyes. I already saw and experienced very much with my eyes.

Unfortunately, however, those eyes closed more and more as my life continued. Perhaps it was because of my socialization at home or at school or for whatever reasons.

Now, as I grow older, I get the impression that my eyes re-open to some extent. It is a process that you probably can also describe as “learning”. Consequently, I believe that “learning” can also be a synonym for “living”.

To say it in a nutshell: so far, I read half of the book and I notice that reading it has again re-opened several of my closed eyes. And this is how it also, again, added to my happiness.

The content of the book is quite banal, and yet it is totally breath-taking.
On a beautiful summer day, “LOVE” and “INFATUATION” meet to go for a walk. “Infatuation” wants to learn from “LOVE” and “LOVE” – who formerly also used to be “INFATUATION”, is happy to share her knowledge with “infatuation”.

While walking through the wonderful summer, they get into a dialogue about love. The experienced “LOVE” supports “INFATUATION” as she seeks it.
This dialogue turns into a wonderful and great metaphor that helped me to become a little more peaceful and happy.

I almost wrote “I found a little more love”. However, this sounds a little too strong for me and I also do not yet know if I am already prepared to accept such a huge thing (or if I will ever be).

The dialogue between LOVE and INFATUATION is full to the brim with small but wonderful insights. For instance, “infatuation” explains one of her weaknesses by the fact that she does “not want to lose face”.

However, the reply LOVE gives – in my words – is that you cannot lose face, you can only lose the mask that camouflages your face. Actually, I do, indeed, have many masks and I am always happy if I manage to lose one of them.

This is only one example out of many insights, all of which are part of the metaphor.

For me, the special quality of the dialogue between INFATUATION and LOVE is remarkable and particularly beautiful. It is the ideal pattern of how peaceful communication can be. It has not happened often that I witnessed and understood in such a nice way how non-violent communication can work.

I was deeply moved by how LOVE kept trying to hand her experience and knowledge down to “infatuation” in a way that was not indoctrinating. Without any form of arrogance or presumptuousness. How LOVE manages to relate to INFATUATION. And how she absolutely refrains from hurting or making INFATUATION look smaller because of her superiority.

And it is just as nice to read how INFATUATION reacts, replies after thorough contemplation and asks clever questions. And how LOVE again deals in a precise way with these questions.

Rarely have I understood so well – without any theoretical indoctrination – what the words consideration and communication mean.

Now I will imitate Paul and give the book to a few other people.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

P.S.
My only regret is that I have never met the author Moshen Charifi. But who knows, perhaps that, too, will happen one day!